28 November 2010

My Thoughts on Tangeld

In the noblest tradtions of the internet, here's my unsolicited opinion of a recent major motion picture: I liked it. (I think the U.S. title and marketing effort is completely stupid, though.)

The movie is a completely unabashed princess musical, but it's well done, emotionally compelling, and the plot makes more sense than the Disney Studio's "Frog" effort.

Some of it's recycled: the stepmother-witch looks like Bernadette Peters' creation of the witch from the stage musical "Into the woods", the characters are very familiar looking Disney fairy-tale "types" (right down to "funny horse #2) and the lead girl is a trapped princess who dreams of the outside world.

But it works. (possible spoilers ahead)
Rapunzel's hair as a magic McGuffin adds a great co-dependency subtext to her relationship with her possessive mother who comes off more as a deeply creepy child-star mom, than simply "Witch type #2".

The sorrowful King and Queen are silent, which is possibly the best decision made on the movie.
They are sincere characters, but really not important to the main story except as plot devices. By having all their scenes in pantomime they're treated as "too important to talk", giving them gravitas and status at the same time saving the audience the trouble of sitting through unnecessary speaking roles.

To me this proves that genre doesn't denote quality. As I see it: genre(as far as marketing goes) is little more than a list of settings and situations. Castles mean "fairy tale". Six shooters mean "western". But the requirements of genre say nothing about the stuff that really matters in a story like compelling characters, a well-written scenario or if the audience cares.

15 November 2010

Some more twaddle

Okay, so I've finished another 8 1/2" by 11" sketchbook, so you get to view the dregs. Also for extraneous reasons, the scans are pretty rough this week.

Some more aerobics video impressions.

Shamless copies (or "studies") of illustrations from "The Complete Bridgman" an artist referred to by Andrew Loomis in his book "Figure Drawing for All It's Worth". Loomis is known as an Artist's Artist, which might make George Bridgman the Artist's Artist's Artist. My copies don't do him justice in the least, though.

Dividends from my Zoo membership: Golden Lion Tamarins. These little monkeys never stop moving, so they're quite a challenge, even just for scribbly gestures.

This goat's older than hell and is fun to look at in the petting zoo pen when he propositions the sheep (that's "Sheep" and not "other goats right there in the pen").

The Leopards are rare to see, and when you do, they're sitting around or sleeping, typical cats.

Drawing naked people is a great way to prove what a serious artist you are, this was from the first day of an Adult Ed. figure drawing class I took.

Oh yeah, and last Wednesday, the Zoo unveiled some new Asian Otter Pups.

08 November 2010

Holy Crap!

One of my extremely talented former classmates, Elena Barbarich draws a highly amusing webcomic: Sister Claire.

I had the privilege of seeing some of her earlier strips back in class, which showcase a sense of humor somewhat beyond the pale. (note the subtitle: "Pregnant Nun: Holy Crap!") Naturally, nuns with Diarrhea are hysterical in college.

Elena manages to mix 4Chan style insanity with a superb eye for color and damnright cuddly nuns.

So if you like the strange, potentially controversial and cute, check it out.